The pandemic prompted a workplace shakeup, shining a spotlight on employee wellness
Amy Blankson offers tools that can boost happiness as we enter a new world of work
In 2022 uncertainty took hold as inflation, volatile markets and a geopolitical conflict added to the challenges set in motion by the COVID-19 pandemic. In a world of shifting expectations and norms, we focused on creating a distinctive experience for our clients, consistent with the five-year strategy we launched in 2020. This North Star guided our global teams as they developed and executed innovative solutions on high-stakes deals, disputes and pro bono matters.
Our client work placed us at the center of global trends related to energy transition, environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, finance and globalization. We contributed to the dialogue on these issues with published insights including “Scaling up the energy transition,” a report based on a survey that explores how capital providers and companies are setting priorities, staying competitive and managing risk. Through our COP27 video series, we explored themes raised during the annual climate conference and their potential impact on business and industry.
In regions around the world, we increased our capacity to serve clients, promoting 59 new partners and welcoming 39 lateral partners. We developed new ways of working with clients, increasing efficiencies and ensuring consistency. These initiatives included our Debt Finance Solutions Team, which leverages legal technology and other resources to handle certain types of routine work, and our Client Experience Blueprints, a series of tools that codify our global best practices for working with clients before, during and after a matter.
We continued to focus on building a more diverse and inclusive workplace, significantly expanding our diversity data collection efforts so we can quantify our progress. Our people benefited from new and expanded coaching programs, and we took concrete steps to empower our associates, focusing on work allocation, skills development and leadership opportunities.
This review discusses these and other accomplishments and initiatives that made a difference to our people and our clients in 2022. Together we face the future positioned for success.
Amy Blankson offers tools that can boost happiness as we enter a new world of work
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The focus on achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 remained a priority for governments, investors and energy companies
Addressing ESG factors became “the new normal” for investors and businesses
Activity across debt and M&A markets slowed as rising interest rates and high inflation saw investors, borrowers and lenders recalibrate risk appetite
Around the world, legal and regulatory developments continued to reshape global interconnectedness
Highlights of our work in 2022
US$2.83 billion in revenue
2,616 total lawyers
Meet the outstanding generation of talented lawyers who strengthened our Firm in 2022
In markets around the world, White & Case earned many of the legal industry’s top accolades
White & Case is committed to fair and ethical operations that respect human rights and recognize the importance of our natural environment.
As a signatory to the UN Global Compact, we affirm our commitment to doing business responsibly by supporting the Compact’s ten principles on human rights, labor, the environment and anti-corruption. The steps we are taking to continue to embed these principles into our Firm are outlined in our most recent Communication on Progress.
Our latest Environmental Sustainability Report includes information on our environmental policies, footprint, key actions and goals.
11 global affinity networks
Our 11 affinity networks foster a sense of community among the Firm’s Black, Asian, Latinx/Hispanic, Middle Eastern, minority ethnic and LGBTQ+ lawyers, business services professionals and their allies. Each network sets its own agenda, initiatives and goals, which are specific to the issues it considers most important. Affinity networks create and enhance awareness of these groups within the Firm and its larger culture, drive community and connection across our global offices, and support their members with career and professional development opportunities.
25 local women’s networks
Our 25 local women’s networks are active in 40 offices across the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific. These networks foster professional development and mentoring activities. They also provide a forum for our lawyers and business services professionals to share perspectives and create programs to support and retain our women while fostering and promoting gender equity.
49%of our lawyers self-identify as of color
28%of our partners self-identify as of color
43%of our lawyers self-identify as of color
27%of our partners self-identify as of color
Leading publications and alliance organizations continue to recognize our commitment to diversity and inclusion
Using data to create change
Committing to growth opportunities for colleagues in wide-ranging roles
Recognizing the value of our lawyers as they start their careers
Focusing on consistent application of best practices
Leveraging technology to streamline routine work and enhance client service
Collaborating to effect change and build strong connections
Visuals by Roman De Giuli
Successful settlement of Reko Diq arbitration award
We represented the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in a rare International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) post-award remedy seeking to revise the largest damages award ever issued by an ICSID tribunal. Pakistan retained us as its new counsel after the ICSID tribunal rendered an award in July 2019 ordering Pakistan to pay to Tethyan Copper Company Limited, a gold and copper exploration company, damages of US$4.1 billion plus costs and interest, totaling US$6.3 billion as of 2022, for violations of the Pakistan-Australia Bilateral Investment Treaty arising out of Tethyan’s investment in one of the largest copper and gold deposits in the world, Reko Diq. The case settled on favorable terms in December 2022, as widely covered by the media.
Dismissal of 29 putative class actions against Gerber
We won dismissal of all claims against Gerber Products Company in 29 putative class actions consolidated in the Eastern District of Virginia. Plaintiffs filed more than 130 consumer class actions against all major baby food manufacturers in courts nationwide alleging that the manufacturers failed to make adequate disclosures to consumers regarding their baby food products. We successfully consolidated all of the cases against Gerber, then won dismissal of the plaintiff’s representative complaint on multiple grounds.
Enforcement of US$356 million award against Romania
We represent Ioan Micula, European Food and others in high-profile proceedings to enforce an International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) US$356 million award against Romania. We had a long string of victories despite arguments raised by Romania and the European Community based on complex issues of foreign relations law and international law. In our latest victory, our clients obtained a ruling from the DC Court of Appeals confirming a US judgment that Romania’s earlier payments did not satisfy the award. The Court of Appeals also affirmed a prior contempt order by the DC District Court against Romania for its refusal to provide information to aid in execution of the award in which the District Court ordered sanctions against Romania for US$1.5 million.
French Supreme Court upholds US$650 million-plus ICC award
We secured a victory for PT Ventures SGPS, S.A. in the French Supreme Court, upholding an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) US$650 million-plus arbitral award. The dispute relates to PT Ventures’ shareholding in Unitel S.A., Angola’s largest telecommunications company. In 2019 we successfully represented PT Ventures in the ICC arbitration proceedings against the three other shareholders in Unitel, including Vidatel Ltd. After the ICC tribunal issued the award, Vidatel applied to the Paris Court of Appeals in an effort to annul the award. The Paris Court of Appeals dismissed the action, and Vidatel appealed that decision to the French Supreme Court. In November 2022 the French Supreme Court rejected Vidatel’s appeal, confirming the ICC award and putting an end to Vidatel’s challenges. The decision is a landmark ruling clarifying important issues under French arbitration law.
Class certification denied in Toshiba securities fraud class action
We are defending Toshiba Corporation in a high-profile securities fraud class action brought in the US District Court for the Central District of California by purchasers of Toshiba common stock and unsponsored American depositary receipts (ADRs). In a rare win for defendants in securities cases, the court denied class certification; the Ninth Circuit then sided with Toshiba, denying plaintiffs’ petition for review. The case raises issues of first impression regarding application of the US Exchange Act and analogous legislation in Japan. Summary judgment on certain remaining issues is pending.